The challenge of diversity to mental health services
This chapter reviews some of the published literature that informs mental health development in low and middle-income group (LMICs); the role of the World Health Organization (WHO) in setting the priorities for development; the current context that development has to address; and future prospects in LMICs; ending with some conclusions. The World Health Report 2001 pointed to the following principles for good systems of mental health care: continuity of care, wide range of services, partnerships with patients and families, involvement of the local community and integration into primary health care. In other words, WHO seemed to advocate moving away from formal mental health services on traditional psychiatric models of treating 'illness', towards a public health and welfare model. Clearly, WHO argues in this document for spreading psychiatry in LMICs in order to reduce what it calls 'the burden in terms of mortality, morbidity or disability' and promote 'human rights'.